LONDON - European far-right leaders have praised Rishi Sunak’s illegal immigration bill, after a senior EU official repeated her doubts about the legality of the plans, according to the Guardian.

“Bravo,” wrote the Alternative für Deutschland party on social media. “Way to go! The current [British] government plans now to deny asylum to illegal immigrants and fly them out to Rwanda,” the party wrote on Facebook, saying Germany should follow this approach. “When will we finally have it?”

Éric Zemmour, the French far-right commentator, who came fourth in the race to succeed President Emmanuel Macron last year, also praised Sunak’s new policy. “The message is clear,” he wrote on Twitter. “Congratulations to the British prime minister who, unlike Macron’s government, has chosen to protect his people against submersion by migrants,” said Zemmour, a proponent of the “great replacement theory” that Muslim immigrants are replacing native Europeans.

Italian far-right leader Matteo Salvini retweeted a tweet by Sunak that had been translated into Italian and set out the government’s messaging on the bill, including the line, “if you arrive illegally in the UK, you can’t claim asylum”. Salvini, who is Italy’s deputy prime minister and heads the far-right League party, described the policy as “harsh, but fair”.

The EU migration commissioner Ylva Johansson, however, said she had told Suella Braverman that her plan violates international law, after the home secretary called her to explain the bill. “Of course, I hope that it will respect the international agreements and the Geneva convention, but I must say that my first impression was that I’m afraid that there might be violations here,” Johansson told reporters on Thursday, promising further study of the draft legislation.

Under the government’s plans, adults arriving in the UK on small boats or in the back of a lorry would be denied the right to claim asylum, even if they had come from a war zone or faced persecution in countries well known for human rights abuses.

Instead people would be sent back to “a country or territory to which there is reason to believe [they would] be admitted”, the country that they had embarked from to the UK, their country of origin or another country where they held a passport, according to the draft bill.